As I men­tioned at the start of this series, Big Data con­tin­ues to cre­ate analy­sis paral­y­sis in many orga­ni­za­tions today. As a result, many orga­ni­za­tions that were once thriv­ing will lose their com­pet­i­tive edge to orga­ni­za­tions more will­ing to adapt to tech­no­log­i­cal and mar­ket­place shifts.

A mid-year report by eMar­keter, “Key Dig­i­tal Trends,” explains that adver­tis­ers and mar­ket­ing teams are work­ing within a chang­ing dig­i­tal land­scape as tablets are replac­ing PCs and mobile has become the new epi­cen­ter of dig­i­tal. The eMar­keter report points out that while ad spend­ing is increas­ing, mostly in mobile, peo­ple are still watch­ing TV. What are adver­tis­ers to do? How are bud­gets best spent? With so much data at your fin­ger­tips, how will you decide?

Accord­ing to the Econ­o­mist Intel­li­gence Unit, mar­keters list the two biggest obsta­cles to more effec­tive dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing strate­gies as 1) inad­e­quate bud­gets for dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing and data­base man­age­ment and 2) a lack of capac­ity for ana­lyz­ing Big Data.” Ash­ley John­ston, senior vice pres­i­dent of global mar­ket­ing for Exper­ian, poses a crit­i­cal ques­tion: “How do you bring email, social, mobile, search, dis­play, print and other crit­i­cal mar­ket­ing touch-points seam­lessly together?” She goes on to say, “It’s not easy, but the good news is that new plat­forms exist that can man­age Big Data.”

Where is your orga­ni­za­tion today in its response to the era of Big Data? To what extent have you researched and imple­mented the five fun­da­men­tal solu­tions to Big Data? In my opin­ion, those solu­tions are 1) ana­lyt­ics, 2) tar­get opti­miza­tion, 3) Web expe­ri­ence man­age­ment, 4) social solu­tions, and 5) adver­tis­ing man­age­ment platforms.

In today’s blog, we will look at four ben­e­fits of the adver­tis­ing man­age­ment plat­form and how this high tech tool can help you man­age and opti­mize your efforts in search, dis­play, and social.

Ben­e­fit 1 | Strengthen Your Cross-Channel Approach

Accord­ing to Experian’s report, there are five major dig­i­tal chan­nels: 1) email, 2) mobile, 3) social, 4) dis­play adver­tis­ing, and 5) search. They note, as orga­ni­za­tions grow more sophis­ti­cated in their mar­ket­ing, there will be a shift from opti­miz­ing each indi­vid­ual chan­nel to opti­miz­ing across channels.

Where is your orga­ni­za­tion along the “mar­ket­ing sophis­ti­ca­tion curve”? “The 2013 Dig­i­tal Mar­keter” explains, “While mul­ti­chan­nel means being present and active in mul­ti­ple chan­nels, cross-channel means being con­sis­tent and coor­di­nated across chan­nels.” It’s time to eval­u­ate where your orga­ni­za­tion is along the curve from “present and active” in these five chan­nels to “con­sis­tent and coor­di­nated” across channels.

Research shows that con­sis­tency and coor­di­na­tion are key to mov­ing toward inte­grated and cre­ative customer-centric mes­sag­ing. This is the ulti­mate goal of mar­ket­ing because it puts the cus­tomer at the cen­ter of the com­mu­ni­ca­tions, ensur­ing that the cus­tomer is hear­ing the same mes­sage through­out all avail­able chan­nels. Cross-channel opti­miza­tion is a sign of orga­ni­za­tional matu­rity and is only made pos­si­ble through the use of an adver­tis­ing man­age­ment platform.

Ben­e­fit 2 | Min­i­mize IT Depen­dency and Cam­paign Man­age­ment Time

Ad man­age­ment plat­forms can help you min­i­mize depen­dency on infor­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy (IT) teams, reduc­ing the amount of time it takes to bring an ad cam­paign to life. As you are well aware, man­ag­ing var­i­ous dig­i­tal adver­tis­ing cam­paigns requires you to track many dif­fer­ent met­rics from impres­sions and clicks to con­ver­sions and web­site activ­ity. In order to track this infor­ma­tion, mar­keters rely heav­ily on the IT team to per­form func­tions such as adding tags to web­sites and gen­er­at­ing and mod­i­fy­ing data feeds. Any­one who has been in mar­ket­ing long enough knows that this depen­dency and coor­di­na­tion requires exten­sive amounts of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, time, and patience. Imple­ment­ing an ad man­age­ment plat­form can help your team min­i­mize its depen­dency on IT while reduc­ing your cam­paign man­age­ment time.

Ben­e­fit 3 | Improve Port­fo­lio Man­age­ment and Performance

Are you con­fi­dent that you are effec­tively dis­trib­ut­ing your ad spend­ing? Do you use met­rics and data to assess the per­for­mance of your cam­paigns? An ad man­age­ment plat­form helps mar­keters man­age their port­fo­lios. Accord­ing to Justin Mer­ickel, senior direc­tor of adver­tis­ing solu­tions at Adobe, “The real power of the (ad man­age­ment plat­form) sys­tem is in the port­fo­lio.” The port­fo­lio is basi­cally the advertiser’s or mar­ket­ing team’s bud­get applied to the three dif­fer­ent areas of key adver­tis­ing: search, dis­play, and social. The plat­form accesses the infor­ma­tion that the advertiser/marketing team puts into the sys­tem. Inputs include bud­get and cam­paign infor­ma­tion as well as objec­tives, or what you are try­ing to achieve. Ulti­mately, the plat­form dri­ves “opti­miza­tion in order to achieve the best results pos­si­ble.” For exam­ple, the plat­form pro­vides rec­om­men­da­tions on how to best spend bud­get. At its most basic, Mer­ickel explains that the ad man­age­ment plat­form pro­vides easy-to-understand charts and graphs that “help you man­age your dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing cam­paigns across search, dis­play, and social media.”

Ad Man­age­ment Plat­forms Are the Fifth Solution

As this series has shown, today’s Big Data needs make a com­pelling case for orga­ni­za­tions to improve upon their tech­no­log­i­cal tools and sys­tems. Adver­tis­ing man­age­ment plat­forms are the fifth solu­tion in the era of Big Data. They can pro­vide mar­ket­ing teams with the nec­es­sary met­rics and insights needed to move your orga­ni­za­tion fur­ther along the mar­ket­ing sophis­ti­ca­tion curve, ensur­ing that you stay on the cut­ting edge.